Point Closet prepares for shop’s grand opening

Campus clothing pantry renovating new location


Photo by Kelsee McHugh

Freshman dance major Anna Fairbank sifts through clothes at Point Closet’s first pop-up shop of the year.

Written By Lauren Clouser, Co-Features Editor

When Point Closet held its first pop-up shop of the year last week, president Monae Findley said she wasn’t expecting many people to attend.

Findley originally anticipated about 200 people, a number which was based on attendance at last year’s pop-up. According to the sign up sheet, they had doubled that amount.

“It surpassed our expectations,” Findley said. “It was over 400 students and 95 percent of the stuff that we had brought down there was gone. So we know that this is one of the most asked-for events that
we have.”

The pop-up, which was held on Sep. 17 in the Lawrence Hall lobby, allowed students to pick out free clothing. It was the first event that the clothing pantry had this semester.

Prim Green, the organization’s vice president, said that the large turnout was likely due to the location.

“Kids were passing by from class and I think it was a great space,” Green said.

The Point Closet started last year and was founded by Findley in order to address student needs on campus.

“I’ve just personally seen and heard of stories where students didn’t have much,” Findlay said. “For me I used to live in a homeless shelter with my mom, so I know the experience and coming from that kind of background. I just wanted to make sure that no one else has to go through something like that.”

This semester, Point Closet now has a space in 207 Lawrence Hall, across from what used to be the WPPJ Radio station. The area was originally a storage area for Culinart.

Currently, Findley said they are working to transfer their donations from the Student Center to the new room.

“Now we’re just transferring everything over trying to get the store looking ready and nice for the public,” Findley said.

According to Green, Point Closet planned to have its grand opening during the first week in October, but had to push the date back in order to make more renovations. Green said they are hoping to be open the week after.

Findley said their grand opening will allow students to visit the store to ask questions.

“Then we’ll just be allowing students to come up, see the place, have some fun, listen to music, answer any questions that they may have and just stuff like that,” Findley said.

Green said that one of the problems with the space was the flight of stairs leading up to the shop, which presents an accessibility issue.

“We don’t really like that because we want it to be accessible for all students,” Green said.

Findley said that the space was out of the way, and could make it difficult for students to find. She said she plans to continue monthly pop-up shops for that reason.

“We’re so hidden. We’re just trying to make sure that we’re open and everyone still has an opportunity to come and get everything that we have to give,” Findley said.

Once the space is finished, the shop will be open from Monday through Saturday. Findley said they were still working on finalizing the schedule.

“We’re still working on the hours because we still have new members who are coming in, people who are trained to volunteer, so we’re still working on the schedule and making sure that we are open in the mornings until the evenings,” Findley said.

Findley explained that the shop is open to anyone, including faculty and staff. Once the shop is up and running, those interested can go up and pick out what they would like, free of charge.

“They can come upstairs and they can look through whatever we have and everything is for free,” Findley said.

The shop will have casual clothing and business attire as well. The Point Closet has partnered with the Career Development Center in order to find professional outfits for interviews and internships.

Angela Scaramucci, the director for the Career Development Center, said that she was talking to Findley about the Point Closet, and the two decided it was important for students to have access to business clothes.

“Since we organize the internship and job fairs and are involved with that we noticed that maybe sometimes student didn’t have access or couldn’t afford professional clothing for those events,”
Scaramucci said.

Scaramucci plans to ask employers at future job and internship fairs whether they would have any dress clothes to bring with them to donate.

“So the employers who are registered… we can let them know about Point Closet,” Scaramucci said. “If they have clothing to bring they can bring donations the day that they’re on campus anyways for their fair.”

Anyone can donate to Point Closet by placing their clothes in designated containers around campus. Findley said they only accept donations of new or gently used clothing.

“We’re trying to give the best,” Findley said. “So whatever is given we always go through it and make sure that it’s in good condition for the students. And everything we deem as not good enough we’ll also donate it to Goodwill.”

Green said the organization’s main goal this year is to get people comfortable with the shop.

“I think I feel like students should have a safe place,” Green said. “If they need things: food, clothing, we can have it out for them.”